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Tuesday, January 11, 2011
Aaron Brooks enjoys big night in Boston


It's been a long season for Aaron Brooks owners, but their frustrations may finally be starting to abate.

Brooks returned to the lineup and swished a season-high five 3-pointers against one of the league's strongest defensive teams in the Boston Celtics. His 24 points also tied a season high that he established on opening night.

In late October, owners were counting on Brooks to again be one of fantasy's top long-distance specialists. Instead, because of two left ankle injuries he's played in just 14 of the Houston Rockets' 38 games.

Ironically, in making his first start since Nov. 6, Brooks replaced leading scorer Kevin Martin, who sat out with a sore right wrist. The Celtics, of course, were without Kevin Garnett (leg), though it's possible KG will return Wednesday when the C's host the Sacramento Kings.

Looking Back

Stephen Jackson continues to enjoy life with Paul Silas on the bench. After pouring in 27 points against the Memphis Grizzlies, Jackson is averaging 25.5 points in six games under Silas. In more good news for the Bobcats, who are 5-2 under their interim coach, Gerald Wallace could return to action Wednesday.

• Steals can be tough to get in fantasy, so Tony Allen should be considered for all leagues as long as he remains a Grizzlies starter. After five more steals Monday, Allen is averaging a stunning 3.4 thefts in his past eight games.

Austin Daye is trying to regain his fantasy sleeper status. The second-year pro played 25 minutes and reached double figures for the second straight game. Interestingly, all 14 of his points against the Chicago Bulls came in the second quarter. Daye had dropped out of the Detroit Pistons' rotation for more than a month after starting 11 of the team's first 12 games.

Looking Ahead

• The biggest potential DNP for Tuesday isn't a player, but a game. The Milwaukee Bucks-Atlanta Hawks contest could be postponed due to the winter storm that's gripped the southeast. If the game happens, the Bucks could be healthier than they've been in a while. Andrew Bogut (illness) is expected to play, and Drew Gooden (foot) could also go.

Andre Iguodala (Achilles) returned to practice Monday, but his status for the game against the Indiana Pacers is uncertain.

Tyreke Evans (ankle) could miss a second straight game when the Kings visit the Washington Wizards. Francisco Garcia would likely see big minutes if Evans sits.

Michael Beasley (ankle), who left early in Sunday's game, might not be available when the Minnesota Timberwolves host the San Antonio Spurs.

• With Grant Hill (knee) questionable, owners could get strong fill-in numbers from Jared Dudley. Dudley had 21 points and seven rebounds Sunday, when Hill played only four minutes.

• Now that Anderson Varejao is finished for the season, it appears that J.J. Hickson is back in the Cleveland Cavaliers' starting lineup to stay. Hickson, who's available in more than 50 percent of ESPN.com leagues, is now worth a roster spot in all but the most shallow leagues.

Neil Tardy is a fantasy basketball analyst for ESPN.com.